Friday, March 03, 2017

Panama Canal area - Old Gamboa Road

When I said yesterday that the hotel has been the best spot, that was before we visited the end of the Old Gamboa Road.   The vast majority of it is now inaccessible with one end closed off as a military base and the other end closed off with a big construction site related to the ongoing development of the canal.   What that left was a stretch of road less than a quarter of a mile along, with some residential houses to one side.   Seeing this our expectations were low however they were substantially exceeded.

We saw first an Aguti:

Then in the trees above us Grey-headed Chachalaca:

Followed by Chestnut-headed Oropendola:

A female Barred Antshrike, i love the plumage on this:

Blue-gray Tanagers:

A Cocoa Woodcreeeper, which is a surprisingly tough bird to get a good picture of.   They move like woodpeckers up and along tree trunks and branches, that and their cryptic plumage make getting a vaguely sharp image, really tough:

More Tamarind Monkeys (we heard but didn't see Howler Monkeys here too):

And then everything went quiet.   Search for the raptor time, here it is a Laughing Falcon had appeared a short distance away:

When that headed on the birds started popping-up again, here a Golden-hooded Tanager was feeding on some berries:

One of my favourite Central American species next, the Red-legged Honeycreeper:

Still the birds kept coming, next a Ruddy-breasted Seedeater:

Variable Seedeater:

Rusty-margined Flycatcher:

White-necked Jacobin:

We could probably have stayed their all day.   The local residents were fairly amused/bemused but i think they see a lot of birders around the area.   As it was the day was getting hot again, headed to 37c so it was time to retreat.   The Old Gamboa Road however had proven an excellent spot and was probably the first time we really got carried away with the birding on this trip.


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